From Charles Lyell 23 April 1855
23d Ap. 1855.
My dear Darwin
I have seen a good deal of French Geologists & Paleontologists lately1 & there are many whom I should like to put on the R.S. Foreign list2 such as Archiac,3 Constandt Prevost4 & others— But the man who has made the greatest sacrifices & produced the greatest results, who has in fact added a new Period to the calendar is Barrande.5
The importance of his discoveries as they stand before the public fully justify your choice of him but what is unpublished & which I have seen is if possible still more surprising—
Thirty genera of Gasteropods (150 species) & 150 species of Lamellebranchiate bivalves in the Silurian! All obtained by quarries opened solely by him for fossils. A man of very moderate fortune spending nearly all his capital on Geology & with success—
E. Forbes’ polarity doctrines are nearly overturned by the unpublished discoveries of Barrande—6
I have called Barrandes new period Cambrian (see Manual 5th Ed) & you will see why. I could not name it Protozoic but had Barrande called it Bohemian I must have adopted that name—7
All the French will rejoice if you confer an honor on Barrande—
Sincerely yr | Cha Lyell
Dana is well worthy of being a Foreign member—8
Should you succeed in making Barrande F.R.S. send me word—9
CL would like to put Joachim Barrande on the Royal Society’s foreign list. Of French geologists and palaeontologists, he is the man who has made the greatest sacrifices and produced the greatest results.
- Letter no.
- Lyell, Charles
- Darwin, C. R.
- Sent from
- Source of text
- Imperial College of Science, Technology, and Medicine Archives (Huxley 6: 7)
- Physical description
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 1672,” accessed on 21 January 2017, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-1672